It’s Not Important….

This was originally posted on my former blog: toyinfab.blog.com

In case you missed it: enjoy.

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I looked at him and wished I could rest my head on his shoulders, the urge was so strong and I was having a hard time controlling it, I thought of what he would think if I did it, I wondered if he would be appalled or just enjoy an opportunity to give comfort to a beautiful girl in need. Looking around, I imagined what the other occupants of the bus would think too. His face was handsome and clean shaved with no stubble in sight, a smooth face; just what I needed to run my palms over, I thought sighing. I thought of saying hello but decided against it.

I needed comfort badly, a massive headache was just reaching its peak, my heart too was aching from hurt and my eyes from the sleepless night. The last time I closed my eyes was 2.00 am when I saw the message, I silently rebuked myself for giving in to the temptation to read Juwon’s messages, I should have gone back to sleep after using the bathroom which was what woke me in the first place, but I had seen my Blackberry beaming its red light, checked it and saw I had a message on my Blackberry Messenger, I should have known that whatever Juwon wrote will only make me depressed.

***

It was the usual topic that causes all our flights, the question of when I would join him in the states,I sent him a message on BBM telling him how I thought the ring he placed on my finger for three years now was a sort of a bondage and not really signifying any intention for marriage. I told him I was going to ship his ring back to him unless he comes around to see my people and choose a day for our wedding, I was annoyed and I conveyed it in my chats, I was sick of telling every man that comes my way off just because I have a ring on my finger,I told him of the days when I feel the need for a man to hold me, I told him of the lonely nights I spend in my flat, shivering from the cold and on hot nights wishing I had a man to stand up from the bed and put on my big generator, I told him how at my 30th birthday the previous month my mum had almost broken my finger trying to wrench off the useless (her words) ring on my fourth finger. I told him I didn’t understand how his wanting to concentrate on his PhD program affected our getting married, I reminded him that we still had a long way to go in preparing for marriage, I reminded him about how our bid to get a residency visa for me would only be possible after marriage and how that might also take a considerable amount of time, I ended my talk by telling him how much I love him and how much I hated to bug him.

Juwon was online throughout my ranting, I kept seeing the telltale ‘r” on BBM that signified he was reading, I waited for a response but I never got any, I was upset that he didn’t respond, I dialed his number but he didn’t pick, after like an hour of tossing,turning and hissing I went back to sleep only to wake up at 2.00am and see his response, the one that kept me awake for the rest of the night.

*****

The bus was stuck in the usual traffic, I checked the time and I saw I still had at least an hour to get to work before I could be considered as late, that meant I could relax and take my mind off the traffic, I checked out his shoulders again, strong I thought once again pushing away the desire to rest my head on it. I imagined how it will feel if he wrapped me in his arms and pushed the thoughts away. I looked at the messages, went back to the response and my heart ached yet again as I read it;

“I can’t sleep……”

“I keep thinking of why you disturb me about these things every time”

“I am wondering what it is that is chasing you and putting you in such a rush”

“please I need peace of mind to face my studies here…..stop pestering me with things that are not important.”

“However, if you are so much in a hurry then……..”

If there was a suggestion I could give RIM it will be that they should make the BBM application such that you could underline some words in messages for posterity sake. In my mind I underlined the “pestering”, ‘‘unimportant things” and the “if you are so in a hurry….” part. To Juwon, my desire to be his wife was not important, my burning desire to get married at thirty was also not important and of course if I was in a hurry I could go to hell or whatever it was he meant by the uncompleted sentence.

******

I sighed and decided it really shouldn’t be important if I placed my head on the stranger’s shoulder so I placed it gently, he froze and then adjusted so I can place it well, I could feel the eyes of the other occupants of the bus boring holes into my back, but also shrugged it off as unimportant, they couldn’t be sure we were not lovers anyway and I quickly hid my ring finger. I saw it as unimportant when he asked for my name, phone number, Blackberry pin and office address. It didn’t really seem like a big deal when we met for dinner that very evening, neither was it a big issue when I spent a night in his house a week later.

****

“Hi baby, I am at the airport”

“You are traveling?” “To where? “

“I’m not traveling, I just arrived”

“You just did?” “Arrived where?”

“MMIA of course, I need you to come pick me”

“You didn’t say you were coming”

“Yeah, I didn’t…..it was meant to be a surprise but you don’t seem excited, I thought you would be.”

“I don’t?” “Oh, I am glad, just shocked. I will leave the house now” I said dropping the call before he could say another word.

My forehead broke out in perspiration immediately, I thought of the things I had done in the past one month and was filled with sudden shame.

I picked my phone hurriedly and began the necessary weeding of text messages and call history.

I stepped into the sunshine and flagged a cab, I told the driver to head for the airport and sat quietly at the back, my heart thumping with dread, I felt like my guilt was written all over me and tried to force excitement into my heart. It didn’t work so I started psyching myself up chanting ”the things I have done, Juwon must not know” all the way to the airport….

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Author: Toyinfab

Young, beautiful…..allergic to nonsense

Toyinfab has written 16 articles for us.

11 Responses

ololade 04/12/2012 9:01 pm

Nice one,keep it up

onceuponafatum 04/12/2012 9:43 pm

OMG! she better not tell him cos he will definitely use it against her to break-up with her. Great story …. I totally relate

Olasheni 04/12/2012 11:05 pm

Pls I need the tail end pls

9jaBloke 04/12/2012 11:55 pm

We uncannily provide the leverage for fate to throw the kitchen sink at us…………..sometimes! Quite an intriguing short story, one that holds so much lessons in that oft mouthed cliche: Had l known! Nice one Tosin.

ololade 05/12/2012 1:18 am

I totally agree wit u on dis one.

Mag Fawibe 05/12/2012 7:32 am

Nice piece Toyenyen!! Keep it up darling sister, I see you winning an award so day!

Somi 05/12/2012 9:42 am

Ha han… She should have told the Juwon guy that it was over na. Before moving on to the next one. After underlining all those key phrases in his chat, I thought she would give him marching orders, if she had then anything she does with the new one would be perfectly acceptable. Anyway sha…. Good work. Would love to read the next chapter.

Anonymous 05/12/2012 10:01 am

Nice one………

egbeyemi omorilewa 05/12/2012 11:20 am

ahh! aunty toyin dis one superb gani o!

zebbook 05/12/2012 7:32 pm

Wowza!!! Tuale mama, this is BEAUTIFUL!!! Kai, I love it mehn.

Bukola oyat 06/12/2012 5:47 pm

Wooh that’s great story can’t wait for d conclusion.

 

 

 

 

Not So Happily Married ……. Episode Twelve

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click here to read previous episodes of NSHM

I could almost hear my heart beat in my chest. How long had he been standing there? He couldn’t have seen anything, could he? If he had seen us, he wouldn’t stand here with that needy look on his face.

Oh God, what is wrong with me? Why am I not rushing into his arms, kissing him and telling him how much I wanted us to settle our issues?

“Boye, please be rational.” I heard him say.  My vision blurred at his words, my eyes clouded with unshed tears.

What have I become? I thought, leaning against a door. Why am I so confused, so disoriented?

“Boye”. I heard him call. He was close to me now,  the scent of his body spray teasing my nostrils.

“Things are not the way you think they are, that’s why I am here, to end this anguish for us both.”

“Did you have to come? You didn’t have to.”

“Errrm”  Someone cleared his throat. It was Femi. I had forgotten he was there. Jite and I glanced at him.

“Boye, I will be going downstairs to join the others. I think you should talk to your husband but if you are bent on throwing him out, I will be here. That’s a joke.” he added at Jite’s startled look.

I watched him leave, his words echoing in my head. “If you are bent on throwing him out, I will be here”

Is that what I have been doing? Throwing him out? Does Femi now say such things to me?

“Let’s find somewhere to sit Boye.”

I led the way to my room and he followed.

*****

I am not a saint. Omoboye’s behavior was infuriating me and I wanted to do what my head was telling me. Turn back and look for an ATM machine to withdraw money from.

But I felt I had to do the best that I can to salvage our marriage. Heck! We hadn’t even done six months and we already looked and sounded like a marriage counselor’s nightmare.

I followed her to her room thinking of Femi’s remark. What did he mean by he was there for her? Was he planning to take advantage of Boye? I felt my fists clench at the thought. Would he dare? They were friends, they work together. That was all I knew, so what was that comment about? I didn’t want to dwell on such unpleasant things and decided to focus on Boye and the things we need to discuss.

I took in the room, “great place.” I said just to break the silence.

“Yeah.”

“The whole place is so peaceful and quiet.”

“Yeah.”

Okay, this is going nowhere. I thought.

“Omoboye, let’s talk.”

“Okay”.

“First thing, I am sorry for not telling you about Skipper. I will like to do that now.”

“Not yet Jite.” She said.

“I am going to faint if I don’t say what’s on my mind now. I feel so guilty and dirty. I just have to say it.”

My heart constricted at her words. I swallowed the saliva that instantly pooled in my mouth, my hands shook in dread. She feels guilty and dirty, she feels guilty and dirty…….why would she feel guilty and dirty? I felt a faint headache starting as I said the words over and over in my head

****

If we were going to talk, we might as well bare it all. I had made up my mind I was going to open up to him only that the decision was easier to make when he wasn’t there, seeing him face to face , it was hard to talk.

But still, things had to change and there was never going to be a good time. He needed to hear everything and then he could decide if he still wanted me.

“Jite” I began pausing as I saw the fear on his face.

Oh my God, he knows already and it scares him. But I felt compelled to say it.

“Jite, Femi touched me.”

“Oh Lord”. He whimpered burying his head in his palms.

“It wasn’t a touch touch like that. It’s not what you think.”

****

“So what kind of touch was it?” I asked raising my head up.

“I was upset, I was crying and then he was trying to comfort me.”

“In the room?”

“No, Jite, we were outside, just by the door. I didn’t even plan to cry, the tears just started flowing when he asked why I was without make up and if I was having problems with my husband.”

“He was hugging me, consoling me and then he placed his hands on my bum.”

She paused.

“And….”?

“And nothing Jite, nothing. I stood there, I didn’t flinch, I didn’t remove his hands, I didn’t say he should remove it, I did nothing, not for several minutes and that’s why I hate myself so much right now. How could I stand there and do nothing? I have always imagined myself as the kind of girl that took no nonsense, as the type nobody except my husband could touch. But Jite, I let Femi touch me. I don’t know who I am again. I find it hard to recognize me.”

I said nothing. I just stared into space for several seconds.

“So where were you going ?” I asked

“He said there was this sightseeing organized by some of the guests. He wanted us to go too.”

“I see.”

“What else were you going to just stand there and let him do?”

“Nothing. I swear. He offered to take me back inside the room so we can talk but I said no.”

“The bastard.” I said through clenched teeth.

So Femi is one of those people I have heard about all my life. The Lizards who stand around waiting for cracks in a marriage’s walls so they can sneak in, and to think my wife just stood there and allowed another man touch her backside. My own property, the one I was supposed to be the only one that ever touched.

Easy Jite, don’t be too hard on her, remember why you are really here and be grateful that it didn’t get worse than that and above all be thankful that she told you.

“Anyway, I am grateful that you told me this Boye”. I said placing a hand on her exposed knee.

“I know you very well or at least I think I do. I know you are not the wayward type and I will like to believe that you won’t cheat on me. So I am not going to dwell on what happened between you and Femi. All I will say is you won’t be working with him ever again. I think as your husband. I can still say that right? I am still your husband or aren’t I?”

****

“Yes Jite. You are my husband.” I said warmth filling me and removing some of the guilt that I felt.

I don’t know if it was the hand that he placed on my knee or hearing myself call him husband but I was suddenly so aware of him. I smiled at him, my heart open and ready to make peace as my mind visualized a night of passion.

“Alright then Boye, so we are done with that. Now to the Skipper issue, I am sorry I didn’t tell you about her.”

“Did you read the note I gave you in your Mum’s house?”

“I don’t think I did. I didn’t. I hope I have not misplaced it though because I can’t even remember where I placed it.”

“Don’t sweat it. What I wrote there was that Bisade is not pregnant for me and that I am sorry once again about what happened with her. Right now, I am hoping you would forgive me totally. I know you still harbor hurt in your heart and that’s why you can’t trust me. I can’t blame you too much. It’s only human but Boye, we need trust if this is going to work. We can’t keep doing this or we would have to dissolve this marriage.”

“God forbid. Anyway, God will only forbid if Skipper’s pregnancy is not yours.” I added searching his face.

“No baby. I dated Skipper years ago. I am sorry I didn’t tell you about her, she was someone I wanted to forget. It was a turbulent relationship, she was not only a sex addict, she also had Borderline personality disorder, she was clingy, controlling too. It was more than I could handle. I just wanted to forget that one year of my life.

“Yet, you kept her pictures…”.

“I know it’s crazy to keep them, but I am the kind of person who finds it hard to trash pictures, messages or any other thing that connects me to someone. Even if I have forgotten that they exist.”

“So where did you meet her? School?”

“During NYSC.”

“Oh!….so she is the weirdo you once mentioned that you dated during service. The one you said got a nick name that had to do with a skipping rope just because she had an uncanny ability to skip classes and still pass.”

“The very one.”

“Oh! Oh my God!” I covered my mouth as the pieces fell into place.

“So that was why I thought the name was familiar.”

“You know she called the morning after we made love all night. That was back in Zanzibar. You were sleeping and you asked me to check who was calling you. I did and I saw Skipper and felt the name sounded familiar. Somehow I saw a text she sent to you where she said she loved you and had something to discuss with you, something that was very urgent. I decided to assume that it was Bisade’s name that you stored as Skipper.”

“Are you serious? So that’s why your behavior changed; I kept worrying about what it could be. Why didn’t you just ask me?”

“I don’t know. I just couldn’t. I also deleted the message and the call record and I felt ashamed afterwards and couldn’t tell you because of that.”

“You see why we need to talk to each other. To think you were obsessing over someone that means nothing to me.”

“Jite, you know this is so funny.” I said putting a hand to my mouth to suppress laughter.

“What’s funny?”

“As in I am a joke. I kept looking for flaws in her; a pimple, darkened knees or something and yet she had all of these issues and looking at her you wouldn’t know.”

“Yes, you wouldn’t. At least not until she opens her mouth.”

****

She was smiling. I felt all the tension in me ebb away. I stood up from the couch, pulled her up and embraced her.

“Jite, hold on.” She said sighing.

“We are not done”.

“Okay. What else is on your mind?”

“I think I may never be able to conceive.”

“And why would you think that?”

“It’s just a gut feeling that I have. Besides I have had enough time to take in since we got married.”

“Relax Omoboye. No need to worry. I want children, I am not going to pretend that I don’t but the fact remains that I want you more than I want children so not having them won’t change what I feel for you. It was part of the things I wrote in that note. Children or not, I will still love you. Worst case scenario, we will adopt children. I keep thinking that there are several children out there praying to God for a mummy and daddy, we could be the answer to their prayers especially if we can’t have ours.”

“Jite….hmmmm….are you sure? Because all these things are easier said than done ooo especially since we both know this is my fault. ”

“Shhh, Boye. Don’t go into that”

“You see. It still hurts you to think about it, so you are pushing the thoughts away.”

“No Boye. You are not entirely right. True, it hurts that we might have been parents by now but I am willing to let go of all of that and see what the future holds.”

“Jite, I just hope that future holds something positive because Mum promised to make my life a living hell if I don’t have a protruding stomach or a baby by our anniversary.”

I laughed out at her words.

“Are you for real?”.                                                                                                                             

“Yes , she said plenty things o about how she will make sure the whole world knows what I did and how my life will be miserable. Really scary things o”

“There is no problem baby. Your mum can’t cry more than the bereaved. Besides who says anything is wrong with you. It’s still early days Boye. We haven’t even been married six months yet. I need you to get over the paranoia and just relax or we could go for a test just to know if everything is okay.”

“Why does that sound so scary Jite?”

“Don’t be scared. Like I said earlier, I will still love you, Children or no Children”.

“Oh Jite, I don’t deserve you.” She said sitting on my laps and wrapping her arms around my neck.

“No, baby. I think we deserve each other. We are both crazy”.

*****

“I think I am the crazier one here Jite.” I said pressing against him.

“Well, since you insist, I  have to agree that you are the crazier one.”

“Something about us is odd, Jite. I feel like we always do this and then we go back to our quarrels.”

“You mean we always make up somewhere out of our own house and then not long after something else happens that takes us back to where we started.”

“Exactly!”

“So what do you suggest? That we stop making up?”

“I don’t know Jite. I am just tired of our wahala.” She said frowning.

I laughed at her words and tickled her ribs till she joined in the laughter.

“I have a suggestion.” I said when we stopped laughing.

“I think we should do a vow renewal.”

“No. Jite. That’s a no no. Vow renewal when our marriage is not even up to a year?”

“It doesn’t matter; even if it’s two days into marriage. What matters is we know why we want to do it. You and I know our wedding day vows weren’t exactly heartfelt. We know our wedding was just a show for our guests.”

“You are right though. So the vow renewal will be like the one where we say our heartfelt vows right? I think I like the idea.”

“I knew you would. We will organize something small, invite some of our friends and do it. No priests, no dressing up, just two souls baring their hearts to one another.”

“Won’t our friends suspect that something is wrong with our marriage?”

“Do you care if they do? Boye, we need to start paying less attention to what people think. Let them think what they will so long as we are happy.”

“Okay then. But I don’t agree with the no dressing up thing oo. Whatever is worth doing at all is worth doing well and so we are going to make it a grand party”.

“Seriously, Omoboye, I want  a small party.”

“Leave story jare husband and kiss me. Kiss me like your very life depends on it, then I want you to make love to me, do it like I am this bad girl that you want to set straight, like you want to punish me for all the stress I have been putting you through.”

“You have been watching porn?” I asked before shutting her up with my mouth.

*****

Sometimes you think you know what your husband can or can’t do and then he shocks you by doing the unexpected.

The time for Dinner came and we went down. We were all over each other, basking in the afterglow of great sex. I made sure we sat at a table far apart from everyone else. I wanted to avoid Femi as much as I could and hoped that he would do the same.

For a long time, we ate our dinner in relative seclusion. We were undisturbed save for the occasional one or two people who came around to chat with us. Femi was the last person I wanted to see, I still felt some shame for allowing him to touch me the way he did  and so I was very uncomfortable when he walked up to our table.

“Hello Mr&Mrs, you guys seem cozy; everything cool in conjugal land now?”

And then Jite spoke through clenched teeth.

“Femi, excuse us please.”

“Sorry to bother you. I was only being nice.”

Femi looked sincere as he spoke and I could have been fooled if I hadn’t recognized the mischievous glint in his eyes. Jite wasn’t impressed either.

“Thank you Femi, we appreciate your niceness. Now excuse us.”

“What’s with the attitude? Is it my fault that you guys are having problems?”

He said that aloud and my eyes darted around the room desperate to see if anyone was taking notice. They were; several pairs of eyes were trained on our table.

“No, it’s not your fault.” Jite replied. “But let me warn you, the next time you as much as lay a finger on my wife, you would wish you were never born.”

I fixed my eyes on Jite, my heart doing flip flops. I had never seen him that angry. His fists were clenched, there was saliva hanging at the far end corners of his mouth.

“Jite, please ignore him.” I pleaded. “Let’s not cause a scene.”

“Baby, stay out of this.”

“Wow, wow! Such honesty amongst couples. This is so cute.” Femi said.

“But Omoboye seriously? I can’t believe you told him about our small adventure this afternoon. Makes me wonder if you also told him about how I use to ram you so hard, you farted for …….”

He didn’t finish the sentence before Jite’s fist shut him up.

I was mortified. I wanted the ground to open and swallow me up. I still don’t know the one that affected me most; the shocked look on the faces of the other diners, the damage that Jite’s fist did to Femi’s mouth, the clicks of cameras as  pictures were taken or the look of excruciating pain on Jite’s face as he turned towards me.

P S: Ladies, do you think Boye should have told Jite about the bom bom incident? Do you think she would have been better off not talking?

 I find it hard to make up my mind on whether it’s better to hold back some things or spill all .

Not So Happily Married ……. Episode Ten

Hi All,

We have done Ten episodes so far. I can hardly believe this. That means TEN WEEKS. Wow! Thank you for being here every week. I love you. Mwaaaah.

This Episode is dedicated to my brand new Nephew. Mobolaji Oluwadamisi Omoikudu Daniel-Bello. Aunty Toyin loves you so very much. May God always be your strength and shield. Amen.

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        PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR PREVIOUS EPISODES

She walked towards me with her arms outstretched and combined with the smile on her face; you would think I was her long lost sister.

So this calls for a hug? I asked myself as she wrapped her hands around me. Still smiling she drew back and inspected me from head to toe.

She turned to Jite when she was done. He was still looking angry but she acted like she didn’t notice.

“Jite, you picked a very pretty one this time.” She said giving him what looked to me like an intimate smile.

That is it. I am done. I thought clenching my teeth. Who told her she could date my man behind my back and still act patronizing?

“Jite, I am leaving, I will see you later.” I said walking away.

I didn’t look back to see his expression but if he had called my name I would have heard.

******

You would think I was dumb. I didn’t say a word throughout the encounter, not even when Omoboye walked away. Skipper left right after Omoboye did giving me a jubilant look before she entered her car.

Is our marriage jinxed? I thought as I sat back inside the car. Why is it that every time we make some progress something happens that reverses it all? The weekend was supposed to be spent in relaxation. We were supposed to talk and sort all our issues but then Skipper decided to show up. How did she even know where we were? I wondered. Was she tailing me? It wasn’t something that was beyond her. She was psychotic enough to do worse.

Skipper! She was someone I had hoped Omoboye would never meet. She was someone I never wanted to have anything to do with. Again.

We met during my one year National Youth Service. I was determined to marry her and have three kids with her all in the first five minutes that we met. It was a classic case of Infatuation at first sight even though at that time I thought it was Love. I had been standing under the sun for hours waiting to be registered for the orientation camp and there were just about ten more people before it would be my turn when this lady walked up to me pleading with her eyes that she would like to enter the space in front of me. It wasn’t like she needed to plead, I was taken already just by looking into her eyes. Who wouldn’t? Not with her kind of looks. She had the kind of face, frame, skin and body that you get when you mix Edo, Igbo and Fulani genes.

I didn’t even think it through; I just motioned for her to get in. It didn’t matter that I had to contend with the other people on the queue especially the females. I made feeble attempts to make up a story about how she had been there before but the looks they shot me said they understood why I couldn’t say no.

I stayed glued to her even after registration. I was the dude who took her bags to the female hostel, the one who ensured that she got two buckets of clean water every day. I also took her feeding as my responsibility. She didn’t like the food served in the dining hall. She said it wasn’t up to standard, I agreed with her. She was too beautiful to eat the kind of food they served and so I took care of breakfast, lunch, dinner and the snacks and drinks she took whenever we were on the parade ground. She rewarded me with her attention; we spent almost every free time together. We wouldn’t go to our respective hostels even after the bells for lights out had been rung. We would remain entwined in one of the numerous dark corners until a Soldier chanced upon us or sleep became too hard to hold.

She wanted me to make love to her the first day we met. I declined. I believed she was too beautiful for that. I told her she was a delicious dish that one was meant to savor. She didn’t seem too happy about that and by the third day she threatened to give her attention to other guys who needed it. And so I obliged her even though I would have preferred that we do it on a regular bed. We had to make do with the parade ground and concrete floors. That first day and on subsequent days she brought a wrapper along from her hostel room which we spread on the floor or field whenever we wanted to make love. I told her how I felt, but she laughed it off saying we weren’t the only ones after all. I felt she was more beautiful and classier than all those other girls and I told her so but still it made no difference. That was when I started hearing the alarm bell that must have been ringing the moment she started pestering me for sex. What kind of girl does not mind being slept with on a parade ground? But I ignored my fears and we continued our escapades.

It wasn’t until we got posted to the same ministry and we started living together that I realized she was a sex addict. Skipper just had to have sex; nothing could stand in her way. Not menstrual periods, not fasting, not Malaria or Typhoid, not even having an audience. Nothing. I couldn’t keep up and wanted to break the relationship but I couldn’t not after she told me she had borderline personality disorder and could commit suicide if I left her. So I was stuck with her for the rest of the service year. I was ecstatic as NYSC drew to an end especially after she told me her parents wanted her to go for her Masters programme in Cyprus.

We parted on the passing out parade ground. She made me promise I was going to call her every day. I made the promise and a host of others that I had no intention of keeping. I liked her a lot, she was and is still very beautiful but she was much more than I could handle. She however wouldn’t let me be. She became my official stalker, I had to close my Facebook account and even change my email address because of her but still she always had a way to get in touch. She would use my Mom, friends and anyone else that could give her access to me. That went on for two years and then there was silence. Three years of silence. No calls, no mails. Nothing, until the day Omoboye and I got back from Zanzibar.

My heart had skipped a beat when I saw “Incoming call from Skipper” on my phone. I was never going to delete her number; I wanted to always know it was her calling so I could ignore the call. But that day I picked it and then she screamed my name saying how glad she was to have found me again. I didn’t ask why she had to call after I had given thanks to God that she was gone forever. She apologized for not keeping in touch for so long saying that after her Masters programme she took up a humanitarian job in Asia, something that had to do with educating children in remote villages. So why did you leave the needy children of Asia or did you just wake up one morning and realized there were children with greater needs in Africa? I wanted to ask her that but I didn’t instead I asked why she was calling.

“Jite that hurts me; you shouldn’t be asking me that. You are the only man I have ever loved and you know that. It wasn’t like I ever forgot you, I thought of you all the time and when I got back I wanted to call but I decided it wasn’t time yet. But then a few days ago, I was quite bored and I decided to check a blog that a friend told me about. Going through the blog, I saw a link about some popular make up artist’s wedding and when I opened the link I saw you Jite.”

She said the last few words in a pained voice. I knew what was coming even before it started.

“Why Jite? Why would you marry another woman? That should have been me you were holding Jite. We had so much promise. But anyway let’s leave all that. I think I am over it now, although I cried for hours after seeing your wedding pictures, but I am fine really. I will just like you to do me a favor. Can I meet her? I will like us to be friends.”

“Friends ke? I wouldn’t even allow you guys to meet.” I replied ending the call. But Skipper kept calling every day and her request was the same every time. She wanted to meet my wife.

I started the car deciding it was better to go look for Omoboye. I decided to go the house praying I would meet her there. I could imagine what was going through her mind. She probably thought the pregnancy Skipper was carrying was mine.

Why is it so easy for my wife to believe the worst of me? I am so not trusted. I sighed driving away from the Supermarket.

*******

Getting a cab wasn’t hard, there was a taxi park few yards from the Supermarket and I hopped into the first one I saw.

“Where?” He asked.

“Just keep driving towards Ajah.”

“Where in Ajah?”

“Just keep moving.”

“We charge 2,000 naira for anywhere in Ajah oo.”

“You talk too much o jare. Just move the car.”

I was calm. It was strange. My typical reaction would have been to cry or tear my hair out. But I was calm. I knew what I had to do. It was to get out of Lagos for a few days. I needed to be out of Jite’s reach at least for a few days and I knew just where to go. Calabar. I should have been there that weekend. There was a fashion and beauty exhibition organized by an international clothing line that was being held in Tinapa and I had been invited together with the photographer I work with. Femi.

He had been excited about us going together but I had declined thinking it would be better to spend the weekend with Jite.

Calabar is where I need to be. I decided. I gave the cab driver the directions to our house praying I would be able to pack my things before Jite would get home. I placed a call to Femi and was glad he hadn’t left. He was about leaving for the airport and I told him to get me a ticket and come pick me up on his way to the airport.

However, there was something else I needed to do before I leave. A pregnancy test. It was time to know I decided. If Skipper was pregnant then it was only fair that I should be pregnant too. Let’s see who Jite will pick between his wife and mistress. I thought.

I was glad to see Jite wasn’t around when I got home. I had a short time for everything I wanted to do. Jite could come home any minute. I had bought some Pregnancy test strips on my way to the house and grabbing three, I rushed into our bathroom.

Fifteen minutes and three used strips later, I had what had to be the result in my hand. It was negative. There is nothing in this stomach after all. I murmured. I had no idea how much I wanted to be pregnant until that moment.

“Three months and you are not pregnant. You are barren Boye.” I wailed images of several childless women that I knew flashing across my vision.

Not So Happily Married ……Episode Eight

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Some questions are not meant to be answered and most times the questioner knows the one who is being questioned does not have to answer. Some other questions however are meant to be answered and most times both the questioner and the one being questioned knows it. The latter were usually the hardest questions to answer; the type of questions whose answers stuck to the roof of one’s mouth; hard to spit out, yet harder to hold in.

Omoboye’s question had to be answered, she also expected it to be answered only I couldn’t answer not because I didn’t know the answer but because the question both enraged and hurt me. It told me in clear terms that I was neither forgiven nor trusted.  To be fair, it was only natural. I shouldn’t expect to be trusted and forgiven just like that. Omoboye wasn’t God, was she? Even God has to be beseeched to not remember one’s sins. My only wish was that she would talk to me about the bitterness or pain that might be left in her heart but it was as though there was a wall; a very thick one that stood between us.

It is funny how our roles became reversed in such a short while. I thought. Just some few weeks before, I had been the one who refused to forgive and just when I let go of my resentment and anger, Omoboye brought her own issues to fore.

She didn’t repeat the question. She didn’t even say her usual “have a nice day” when I dropped her off.

As I drove away, something told me she might have taken my silence as “Yes” and I felt like racing back to tell her the answer was no but I didn’t instead I thought of another way to answer her question. It seemed easier.

****

He didn’t answer my question.  Bisade must be pregnant. That was what I kept thinking as I walked into my make up studio. There was work to be done. My students were there waiting. They were supposed to have a practical session but I rescheduled it and locked myself up in my tiny office.

Anger coursed through my veins, I wanted so desperately to call him, vent all the anger that I felt. I wanted to curse Bisade to her face but I didn’t even know where she lived; I didn’t know where she worked. I knew next to nothing about her. I decided I could go home and rummage through some stuff and see if I would find the information I needed somewhere.

I didn’t know what exactly it was that I was looking for but I knew Jite had a box filled with papers on the top of our wardrobe. I decided to start my search from there.

The box was filled with letters, printed e-mails, photo albums, greeting cards and some notebooks.  I told myself I had a right to go through my husband’s stuff and so I began to read the letters.  The letters evoked several emotions in me and I forgot the pain I felt and the real reason for the search. Some of them made me laugh, some made me turn up my face in disgust and going through some, I felt pangs of jealousy. There were too many girls, some of them were familiar names but majority were names I had never heard of.  Jite and I had had  shared stories about exes while we were dating. He had told me there were too many to talk about but had mentioned the name of the notable ones.

I had what could pass for fun until I reached a Blue coloured envelope that had the word that had been giving me nightmares written on it in Jite’s handwriting. “SKIPPER”

I sat up immediately I saw it and began to open the envelope with shaky hands. It was filled with pictures taken in several cities of the world. Whoever you are Skipper; you are one heck of an Ajala the traveler. I murmured going over pictures with backgrounds like the Burj Al Arab, the Eiffel Tower, the statue of liberty….there were about sixteen pictures in all and Skipper looked exquisite in all of them. The pictures all had an inscription on the far right corner; “Love. Skipper”

“Who is Skipper?” I asked for what was could very well be the thousandth time?

“Why not ask Jite?” I thought

“Why ask him?”

“For your peace of mind, for your sanity, is it not better and easier to ask?”

“No, I don’t think I want to know. But still, I want to know.” I told myself sighing.

Skipper is beautiful; I had to admit that even though it was painful to admit it.  I stared at the one she took in Paris, in front of the Eiffel tower wondering why anyone could be that beautiful and why Jite had never mentioned her. Was she that special? She must be. He had even created a different envelope for her pictures. I stared at the pictures for another fifteen minutes trying to find a flaw – a crooked or broken teeth? K- leg?  dark spots?. I found nothing. There must be a flaw somewhere I concluded. No one could be this perfect.

I didn’t stop looking for faults until the words of the text message I read in Zanzibar and its implication jumped into my mind. Skipper was in Lagos and she didn’t know Jite was married, she hadn’t wished him a happy married life. I obsessed over that for a while before other thoughts set in. Those calls that he took in private and which always turned out to be from Skipper. Could it be they were already meeting? She must have told him she called and sent a message, how come he didn’t ask why they went missing on his phone? What does Skipper want from my man?

*****

Sweets,

Bisade is not pregnant, at least not for me. Like I told you earlier, we used protection. That’s not the only reason I know though. I have spoken to her after we came back from Zanzibar. I know I promised not to have anything to do with her again, but I felt like I needed to see her, I felt I needed to know there were no problems. I know how much it would hurt you if it turns out she was pregnant. I also needed to apologize to her because I feel like I used her. In case, you are wondering, we didn’t do more than talk.

She assured me I was forgiven and she wasn’t pregnant. Once again, I am sorry for this mess we are in. it was all my fault. If only I had forgiven you in the very beginning. My behavior was inexcusable. Omoboye I am sorry and I love you. Even in all this madness, I still love you. I must also add that I meant it when I said we should slow down on the pregnancy thing. I want you first before any other thing, and I mean it when I say it won’t matter if we never have children. I would still love you. We would adopt fifteen kids or whichever number you wish. Just don’t lose yourself in this mess. Let’s be happy babe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Jite

The idea of giving her a note sounded like what a coward would do and I had a feeling that Omoboye would feel the same way. Why do I find it so hard to talk to Omoboye about stuff? I wondered as I slipped the letter in my pocket. I knew it would be better to say those things to her face but I didn’t want to see the disbelief and distrust in her eyes. I could only hope that when she read it, she would think about it and believe me.

****

I wanted to burn the pictures along with Jite’s box but I felt that would be too dramatic. My mind was in turmoil and the unanswered questions kept revolving, who is Skipper and what was the urgent thing she needed to discuss with Jite. After over an hour of thinking about Skipper, I decided to leave the house. I didn’t want to face Jite not with the way I was feeling.

I also wanted him to suffer, wondering what could be going on in my mind.

I packed a bag and left for my Parents’ place. I knew Mom would want to ask why I wanted to sleep over at their place and I had a story ready. Jite was out of town.

****

Jite,

I would be at my Parents’s place. I will tell Mom you travelled. It shouldn’t be for long. I need to clear my head. We should talk when I get back. I will appreciate if you don’t come to the house or try to tell Mom what is really happening.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Take Care

I read the note for the third time and afterwards placed the one I drafted for her beside it. I wrote her a note, she wrote me a note. Only hers got delivered while mine couldn’t reach her. Are things this bad? I wondered. Why would Omoboye leave my house to clear her head in her father’s house? Did she not know how wrong that was? Every responsible and wise woman knows how wrong it is to leave her husband alone for any reason. I felt anger well up in me as I looked around the house, checking for things she might have packed to help give a clue on how long she might be gone. The wardrobe looked untouched; I could barely notice that anything was missing. That is good. I thought hopeful that it would be for a few days.

****

Being at my Parents’s place wasn’t fun, it was the reason I stopped living with them after graduating from the university. My mother was too bossy, too judgmental.

She had snorted when I told her Jite was out of town and I didn’t want to stay alone murmuring something about how the matter that a man says Baba must not hear would eventually be settled by Baba. I had ignored her, pretending I didn’t hear her words.

I stumbled on “I didn’t know I was pregnant” the day I got to my parents’ place. Mum usually slept before 9pm and that gets reduced to 8pm on days when Dad wasn’t around which was usually five days in a week given that he worked in Ibadan. After Mom slept, I saw a movie until 11pm and turned in for the night but I couldn’t sleep, I kept tossing around.

At first I thought it was because the air conditioning was too much but I later realized it was something different, something that brought tears to my eyes. I was missing my husband. It’s amazing how something you have done all your life suddenly becomes alien. Before marriage, I had slept alone without any discomfort but there I was without my husband for just one night and all I could think of was how soothing it would be to have him beside me.

After two hours of trying for sleep, I went back to the sitting room. I scanned the stations to see if there was any program that would interest me.  It was while checking through  the channels that I saw “I didn’t know I was pregnant”. The cases the program featured were a bit different from mine but it was still similar in a way. These were women who didn’t know they were pregnant until the day they started having contractions. One of the cases I watched that night was someone whose baby just dropped on the floor of their sitting room. I was excited. Perhaps I was pregnant after all. The only difference was I suspected I was pregnant while they never had a clue. anorexia

Their stomach size didn’t increase while mine was increasing. They didn’t have symptoms while I was having symptoms but still I was glad to see the programme. Perhaps my contractions would just start one day and my baby will drop too. If I was pregnant, it would be around two months. That is too early for other people to notice, isn’t it?  I thought excitedly. I slept happy after that confident that I was truly pregnant and ignoring the tiny part of me that was still in doubt.

****

I didn’t talk to Omoboye until the third day after she left the house. It wasn’t because I wanted to honor her wishes and not call. It was because I couldn’t. Her phones were switched off and I know she would be upset if I called her Mom. I knew very well how much she hated people thinking there was anything wrong with her life. When the call went through, I didn’t ask why she switched off or why she didn’t contact me, I just asked how she was doing.

She assured me she was fine and would be home soon.

“Jite, I feel much better now. She said. I should be home in two days time. There is so much we need to talk about when we see. I have some questions I need answers to.”

“How about I come to your Mum’s place?”

“No, you can’t do that. She would wonder why. She already suspects that we have issues.”

“Okay. I understand. But Boye, why don’t you just come home today. I have missed you so much. This house is empty without you.”

“I hear you Jite but I would like to stay for two more days. However, there is an option. You could come around late this night and say you had to cut short your trip. Make sure it’s really late so that we can say we would rather sleep over instead of going back to the house.”

“That’s okay with me Boye. I can do that.”

“Jite” She called in a tone that made my heart skip a beat.

“Yes love”. I answered half hoping she would say I love you.

“We would be sleeping in separate rooms and don’t ask me why.”

With that she dropped the call, I didn’t have a chance to respond, not that I would have said anything. I was still very worried about her state of mind and was prepared to do anything it would take to make her happy.

****

After Jite and I spoke, I decided it was time to talk to Boladale. Although I hadn’t deleted her contact on my Blackberry messenger and phone, I wasn’t picking her calls; neither was I acknowledging her messages.

I called her up that afternoon and informed her I would like to see her. She asked if I would like to come to her office and I said I would prefer if we met at a Sweet Sensation outlet close to her office.

She hugged me as soon as she saw me and I hugged her back. It was a bit awkward but I smiled at her. I needed her to think we were cool.

“Babe, what’s up? How is married life? I don’t even need to ask, I can see you are glowing.” She added.

Something about our friendship had changed. Before the pregnancy issue Boladale and I could talk for hours about just anything but there we were acting like two siblings who were meeting for the first time.

“I am fine Bola. I am sorry I wasn’t picking your calls, I was just so annoyed with you but I am past that now. I don’t want to sacrifice our friendship because of something so trivial.”

“Thank you Boye. Thank you. This makes me feel so better.”

“It’s okay. No problems at all.”

“Boye, I didn’t tell you everything the other day. I want to tell you now but promise me you would forgive me.”

“Bola, I can’t make a promise when I don’t know what’s involved.”

“Omoboye, please promise me.”

“Boladale I can’t promise you.”

“Hmm, either way I just have to say it. I have to lift this terrible burden off my shoulders. When I am done saying this, Boye you can kill me and I would deserve it.”

“Boladale, what is it that you have to say?” I asked in an impatient voice.

“Remember, when I said the father of my unborn baby is a married colleague, I didn’t mention that he is someone close to you. Someone very close to you.”

I shivered, a sudden cold enveloping me. It was as though a bucket of chilled water was poured on me. “Someone close to me, someone very close to me. Someone that is your colleague” I murmured.

“No, Boladale.” I shrieked, flying out of my seat as comprehension set in.

Not So Happily Married….. Episode Five

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“Paradise.” Jite said as soon as the airplane landed on Pemba Island.

“Baba Paradise.” I agreed.

I felt energised as I breathed in the air. I began to take pictures; the last six hours completely forgotten. Apart from the five hour flight from Lagos to Zanzibar, it had taken another thirty minutes flight from Stone Town airport to get to the island. I was tired but didn’t want to miss a thing and so I snapped away.

We took a taxi from the airport and got to our lodge after another fifteen minutes. I knew then that it was a fact that the most beautiful places on earth are usually the hardest to get to.

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The house we rented was exactly as advertised. One of the first things I saw was the terraced garden that had made me fall in love with the house when we were booking and then the outdoor pool and the reclining chairs beside it.

“Heaven!” I exclaimed linking my hand with Jite’s.

Our hosts; the owners of the house met us at the door.  They were there with their staff and gave us a very warm welcome. We were immediately offered refreshing cocktails made inside Pine apple shells. I was  so thrilled. pineapple

The room was so beautiful it seemed surreal. The bed hangings, lamps and cushions were all Morrocan. It was also painted Lavender; my favorite colour and smelled of spices.

Jite relaxed almost immediately we entered the Island and by the time we entered our room, he was already sporting a smile, holding my hands and rubbing my shoulders. I decided the Island wasn’t just Paradise after all and so I christened it Miracle.

Barely thirty minutes later, we were treated to a freshly prepared meal of Prawns, Lobsters and Pilau – the famous spicy Rice of Zanzibar. Our host also provided us with a map of the Island which contained some of the available sights and activities to engage in.

When we got back to our room after the meal, I read out the activities and did a little tap dance with each activity that I read out.

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Diving with the Dolphins.     tap

Wading in Shallow Sandbars.  tap tap

Volcanic Stone Massage. tap tap tap

Snorkeling. tap tap tap tap                              

Visit to World Heritage Site of Stone Town. tap tap tap tap tap

A local dhow sunset cruise which includes a picnic in a secluded mangrove area. tap tap tap tap tap tap

I had Jite giggling nonstop throughout the reading and I felt a warm glow spread through my body with each giggle.

****

Omoboye was really excited and I was too. I was finally feeling happy about being married and it felt good.

“Hey Jite, why don’t you allow things to remain this way?”

“Yeah Jite we would allow things remain this way, everything except the unprotected sex.”

“You are just a block head.”

“Thank you.”

I was still watching Omoboye dance as I had the conversation with myself. She looked so beautiful in a Red sun dress that barely covered her lower thighs. My eyes bulged as she stopped and in what was barely a second, removed her dress and expertly threw it on one of the cushions in the room.

“I didn’t know I married a stripper.” I said making sure I was smiling so she would know it’s a joke.

“There are lots of other things you would still find out about your wife Jite and guess what; you have a lifetime for that.”

“Yes Omoboye, we do have forever.” I replied.

My boxers suddenly felt uncomfortable as she did another strip tease and removed her Kente bra. She is the only girl I know who could use Kente material as underwear and make them look super sexy.

She stood there naked except for her Kente G-string. It was the perfect moment for an embrace, a kiss and at least an hour of mind blowing love made on the bed that smelled of exotic spices. It was a rare moment, one that we didn’t take or that I refused to take. I broke the eye contact first and picked up my phone from where it laid on the bed. I decided it was a good time to call our parents.

Omoboye wanted our phones off; she had talked about it months before the wedding. We could occasionally call our parents and make updates on Blackberry but that was it. I was itching to open my twitter page, I knew there would be numerous mentions and direct mentions on it but I had agreed with Omoboye that it wasn’t proper to get back into social media so soon.

*****

My heart bled for the moment lost but I was grateful Jite was coming around so I couldn’t complain. I consoled myself with the hope that more would come and decided to join him on the bed. I sat on his laps with my legs facing forward, my crotch strategically placed on his and my bare breasts practically in his face. It was something no full blooded man (especially a new husband) would ignore.

He didn’t flinch, he only adjusted to accommodate me better; the gesture ensured my centre rested perfectly on his.

“It’s been so long.” I murmured as he told me he wanted to call our parents. He smiled. He understood I wasn’t referring to the calls.

We spoke to Jite’s Mom and my parents. His Mom sounded really excited; she just got a call about another contract she told us. The phone was on speaker and I gave a whoop that I hoped sounded genuine enough. I have always believed something was fishy about his Mom and the way she got the funny and very fraudulent contracts that she did now and then. But she was my mother in law and as long as we benefited who am I to complain.

Dad was cool as usual. My Mom however kept asking if we were having fun laying emphasis on the fun. The way she said the fun reminded me of how I needed to get pregnant fast.

Time was running out and we hadn’t even started.

***

She wants me, I know that. I want her too.

The atmosphere seemed too perfect for me to use a condom or withdraw so I knew I had to provide a distraction. I rolled her off my laps and lay on her. She closed her eyes and I felt guilty about what I was about to do. I kissed her neck, earlobes and her forehead. Everything in me wanted to go all the way. I wanted to kiss her lips. I wanted to lose myself and wallow in the depths of her. More importantly I had a sudden urge to wipe away the memory of the horrible sex we had on our wedding night.

But I didn’t.

“Sweets, don’t you think we should head out to the pool; I will like to find out if that water smells of spice too.” I said smiling and pretending I didn’t see disappointment cloud her eyes.

“We could take a cool swim, head for the beach and then…….”

“Wait, Sweets do you think anyone would mind or see us if we decide to make love on the terrace later tonight?”

She smiled then, her face brightening.

“I guess we could try Husband”.

****

I was disappointed. There had been something in his eyes, something that held promise of bliss, of love- the type we used to have before the pregnancy and the Cripple but it went away and I couldn’t even stop it from leaving. I wasn’t too disappointed however; at least there was hope for later.

I can wait.

He had called me Sweets. That felt good. My Jite was on his way back.

“God, can we stay on Miracle forever?” I asked under my breath

****

After our swim, we headed for the beach.

We both glanced at ourselves the moment we saw the other couples on the beach.

Omoboye made a face.

“I thought Miracle was ours only.”

“Miracle? I thought we agreed its paradise?”

“It’s still paradise Jite. But I couldn’t help naming it Miracle too given the circumstances.”

She smiled then not wanting to say everything on her mind and I smiled back perfectly understanding the things she said and didn’t say.

“So Sweets, maybe we should call it “The Miracle Paradise”.”

“No, Jite. Miraculous Paradise.”

“No, Sweets, Paradise of Miracles.”

“Uhn, uhn” she said in a voice so soft it sent tremors through my body.

“Uhn, uhn Jite. Paradise la Miraculous.”

“La Miracalous ko, La Mira cooler ni.” I replied grabbing her waist as she giggled.

It suddenly seemed as though we were the only ones as our eyes locked again and we shared a kiss.

She tastes so good. My wife. I tasted spice, cream and warmth. I didn’t want to let go. I almost turned her back towards the house but I didn’t. Instead I broke the kiss and we walked in silence towards a hammock that rested between two palm trees. imagesCACCLKF1

***

Almost.

God, I think I’m tired of almost. I murmured sending another supplication to heaven.

I could tell Jite almost turned us both back to the house but he hadn’t.

The kiss was great however. It was different from the one we faked on our wedding day. He tasted just like old times. Mint and a whiff of what I simply call Jitefume for want of an appropriate name.

We walked hand in hand towards the hammock. I looked at the other couples as we passed and wondered if we were the only semi-happy ones or there were others like us.

There was the couple that looked like Ghanaians. Sitting on the sand and building a castle like children. I looked closely; they were building what looked like a bungalow. They would playfully slap each other’s arms away and argue intermittently.

There was another couple snuggling on a mat. They even covered themselves with a blanket. The woman was spread-eagled on the man and together they were sharing a lollipop.

There was an old couple, probably in their Sixties. The woman’s head was on the man’s laps and he was reading aloud to her from a book. She had on thick dark goggles and there was a stick propped beside the Palm tree where they lay. I wondered sadly if she was blind thinking how unfortunate it would be if she couldn’t see the beauty of her surroundings at the same time liking that they were old and yet so in sync.

As we lay in our hammock side by side I saw another couple come out of the waves. A white couple; each was carrying a surfing board.

“So white people come here too?” I said.

“Why won’t they? We are the stupid ones you know, we Africans I mean.” Jite propped himself up and took on his lecturing voice.

“We keep going to the Virgin Islands, US, UK, Dubai when we have these exciting places in Africa.”

“Yeah. True.” I agreed. “There are certainly good holiday spots here in Africa.”

“Sweets, God willing I will like for us to make this a yearly thing.”

“I mean we go on vacations every year, the next however will be Obudu Mountain resort in Cross River. I hear it’s like being in the clouds.”

“That would be nice.” I agreed not mentioning I didn’t see how yearly vacations could happen on an assistant lecturer cum makeup artist income.

****

It felt good being that way with Omoboye. The peace and the serenity was just out of the world.

I thought it would be great for us to take pictures and Omoboye smiled excitedly asking herself why she hadn’t thought of it. She then opened her beach bag to make up her face.

“Who brings a makeup kit to the beach?” I joked

I thought she looked good enough as she was but I knew how conscious she was about her looks so I didn’t say another word and just watched her paint her face and prop herself up in readiness for what should have been natural looking pictures.

****

“Jite, these pictures are so so cool.” I said excitedly when the photographer was done transferring the pictures to my Blackberry.

“Baby, lets update our BBM profile pictures.”

He shrugged in agreement and I gave him my phone so he could transfer whichever pictures he liked. I thought of what to use as my profile message and decided on;

“The perfect honeymoon; sand, sex, water, spice and more sex…..Yipeee…..Forever is beautiful”

I collected the phone from Jite and chose the steamiest picture amongst the ten shots that we took. It was the one where he encircled my upper body with his arms and his hands were practically on my breast. Another reason I loved the picture so much was because of the childish grin on my face. It presented a perfectly happy couple – exactly what I wanted my friends and family to see.

***

“Bola my maid of honour can be so annoying.” I told Jite

“What did she do?” He asked drawing me close so my head rested on his shoulders.

“She is sending me a message on BB, imagine that. The girl has no respect for people in the moon ooo.”

“You are funny, guess she took your changing your display picture as a hint that you were available to talk.”

“I guess so too.”

“Baby”, I called drawing circles on his side. “I know we are not supposed to be communicating but can I just reply her?”

“What did she say?”

“See”, I replied giving the phone to him.  He read her message out

“Iyawo Osingin….shey na you dey wound bobo abi na bobo dey wound you?”

“Answer her; tell we are not in a boxing ring so nobody is wounding the other.”

I laughed at his words certain I won’t tell Bola that

“Babe, what do you think na?” I replied her

“I suspect sey na him go dey win.”

“Who for come win before?”

We both LOLed at that.

“I am so happy for you Omoboye.”

“Thanks Boladale. More thanks for being there all the way.”

“My pleasure. Darling”

“Hmmm. Boye, there is something I need to tell you ooo. I know you’d be mad but I still need to say it.”

I took my eyes away from the phone for a minute and glanced up at Jite to be sure he wasn’t looking at the phone

“What is it Bola? What would I be angry about?”

“Hmmm, Boye, I have betrayed you and I am so ashamed of myself.”

“What is it now Boladale? Just say it first.”

“Boye, I am pregnant. I am three months gone. I didn’t want to tell you all this while because I was afraid.”

“No, Bola you cannot be pregnant”

“In fact you dare not be pregnant ! ”

Not So Happily Married…. Episode Three

Couple_ToyinFABBB

Did you read Episodes One and Two ?

If you didn’t, find them here Episode One , Episode Two

 “How long are we going to do this Jite? You should have called off the wedding since my sins are too great to be forgiven.”

“We will do this for as long as it takes for me to come to terms with what you did.”

“Now, do you want us to make love or not?” He asked holding the pink coloured condom in front of him. I looked at the object in his hands disgusted beyond all measure. I wondered why he felt the need to buy a coloured one. I glanced at the condom case and smirked at the strawberry pictured on the case. Oh crap, perhaps it’s scented too.

“Jite, don’t call this making love; it would be better put as sex.”

“Okay, then do you want  to have sex?”

“If yes let’s get it over with and if no let me go back to sleep peacefully.”

“Okay let’s do it.” I whispered shrugging

*****

Tears poured from my eyes soaking the soft pillow beneath my head.

 “I shouldn’t be crying.”

“This is my wedding night.”

“I should be deliriously happy.”

Those were the words I kept murmuring to myself as I curled up on the only bed. I felt worse than a prostitute probably feels.

“You are a horny fool.” I told myself.

“Why would you agree to being used like that?”

I watched Jite. Sprawled on the bed, he looked content, sated and seemed to be sleeping peacefully. I thought of hitting him with something, anything but I didn’t move. I couldn’t move. “Mea maxima culpa. I brought this upon myself”. I murmured. I made a good man turn into what I could no longer recognize.

*****

I hate condoms. I see them as an unnecessary hindrance. Using them I feel like I am sharing the woman with a piece of polythene, somehow the sharing always ended in one of us being bitter while the other gets discarded in fury.

I felt a sadness that ran deep. I just had the worst sex of my life with my wife on our wedding night. It’s not like the condom was necessary in any way but somehow I was not ready to take the risk of having unprotected sex with Omoboye but most importantly I wanted to humiliate her.  Who knows if she still wasn’t ready for a baby?

The memory was still too raw to take the risk of it reoccurring.

I was at the clinic when you called. She had said as she opened the door of her room. I had visited her that evening after she missed a date we both agreed on.

Really, what’s wrong with you, are you ill? I had asked in quick succession touching her temple with my palm.

“Not really.  I was feeling funny so I went to the hospital immediately I left the salon.”

“I am fine now anyway. I just need to rest.”

“Okay so what exactly did they say was wrong with you?”

 “They said I was pregnant. Imagine that. Imagine me two months pregnant six months to our wedding.”

“What’s wrong with you being pregnant? Isn’t that good news?”

 “Well, it could be good news, except I don’t think it is.”

“If it’s about your stomach being big on the wedding day we could shift the event closer, besides that’s not even a big deal. A lot of people do it these days.”

“Jite, I know but I can’t do it. I can’t carry the pregnancy.

“Well, you can complain and argue all you want but you know you don’t have a choice right?”

“At least you can’t say you want to abort.”

“Why can’t I?”

“I can’t believe you asked me that question. You would abort a pregnancy few months to our wedding?”

“Yes Jite and it’s done.”

I had laughed certain she was joking.

You are not serious Boye, You would abort a pregnancy and still look like this and how would you have even done it so fast. Last I checked, abortion was still illegal in Nigeria.

Jite you have obviously been seeing too much of Nollywood movies.” she replied as she lay on her bed and covered herself with her Ankara wrapper.

“How so?” I asked my heart already palpitating.

“See, abortion is not that complicated; forget what they try to tell us in those movies. There are a good number of qualified doctors that do it on the side and it’s pretty simple. They bring out the foetus and you bleed for some days. You also take come antibio…”

“See, Boye spare me the lecture. What exactly are you saying?”

I’m saying it’s done already.

Omoboye, you can’t be serious. I replied searching her face for a hint that it was a bad joke.

****

I know it’s unheard of to abort a pregnancy when you are already engaged. I know that. I also know a lot of people will like to crucify me over it. But at that time it seemed like the reasonable thing to do. Even my mother had gone ballistics when Jite told her.  

‘That unborn child will haunt you for the rest of your life.”

Mummy, I had gasped.

“It’s not a curse my dear. You would always think of that child, you would feel the loss, if not now, in the future. You would wonder if he or she would have been fair or dark, tall or short, intelligent or dumb.”

“Mummy stop.”

“Stop what? You have done a great evil in case you do not know. My advice to you is that you don’t come crying to me if that man refuses to go ahead with the marriage. Any sane man will call it off because you are not worth it. You are a vain creature with sand paper as brain.”

Mummy this is enough, stop right now or I walk out.

“Feel free to walk out because I have no intention of stopping until I’m done. If Jite eventually marries you because I don’t expect him to, God help you if you don’t get pregnant in your first year of marriage. I would be the one to tell your husband’s people what you have done.”

“Mum! Why are you making this look like a big issue? It’s not like I killed someone.”

“Oh, Omoboye, that’s exactly what you did. You killed someone; you killed a child.”

“Mom, it was a two month old pregnancy, something that was more of blood than any other thing.”

“May thunder strike that stinking mouth of yours.” She screeched sending a slipper flying at me.

I ducked and shivered wondering why she was taking it so violently.

“You called a whole human being something that looked like blood? You were once like that too, imagine what would have happened if I had aborted you.”

“Now get out of my sight, but Omoboye go and pray hard that your husband finds it in his heart to forgive you. If he doesn’t and the wedding is called off, I will tell anyone who asks me. I will tell them what you did.”

Driving to my flat that night I had been mad at Jite for telling Mom but I wasn’t in the position to show it, not when he was too angry to even pick my calls. Later that night after several calls to Jite still went unanswered I asked myself if I was under some kind of a spell. I was certain I had to be the biggest idiot ever. A smarter person would have kept her mouth shut. I kept asking myself what I had expected Jite’s reaction to be. Joy that I aborted his baby?

 

***

This has got to be the worst wedding night in the history of the world. I mused listening to her sobs. Why am I this way? I wondered trying to decide whether to comfort her or not.

But what’s with women and tears anyway?

They find it easy to break down in crocodile tears expecting the man to come rushing to wipe them off. That is not going to happen, I decided.

If I was a woman perhaps I would have cried too. I would have mourned the baby she murdered. Boy or girl. I am never going to know.

All my life, I have tried my best to ensure no girl gets pregnant for me when I am not ready for fatherhood. I made myself so versed in the art of withdrawal that I swore by it and even preach it to friends.

“It’s pretty easy.” I would say. “It’s all about self awareness and mind control. You have to be in control and make sure you are out in the split second before you climax.”

Somehow I must have relaxed after Omoboye and I got engaged and I was certain that must have been why she got pregnant. I felt like a bereaved father. As crazy as that sounds it’s still a fact that I have a child in heaven or wherever it is that fetuses go after they die.

Lying beside her and listening to her sobs, I thought of how we could easily make another baby. All I had to do was draw her close and ditch the condoms. But it was a risk I was reluctant to take. Not until she gets cured of her vanity and I was going to ensure that happens. I decided telling myself it was time to shut out her sobs and go to sleep.

****

Use your head, Omoboye. Think! I told myself.

 Mom always said you were going to be a lousy wife and here you are proving her right the very first day.

I sat up suddenly cleaning the tears on my face with the edge of my night dress.

“What would a smart woman do?” I murmured taking myself back to the moment we entered the room. A smart woman would act like she didn’t know he was acting up and take to pampering him to make him loosen up. My lips curved in a smile as the ideas started flowing.

“God please be with me on this.” I whispered.  

I moved to the side of the bed where Jite was and knelt beside him.

“My husband you must be tired.” I whispered placing my palm on his forehead. His eyes remained close but the frown on his face assured me he wasn’t sleeping.

“Sweetheart, I think we should eat something.”

“Should I order?”

“I’m not hungry.” he growled.

“You are not? What about a drink or something light. We didn’t eat anything at the reception you know.”

“I said I’m not hungry, are you deaf?” I cringed at his words; it was so unlike him to use such words on me.

 “Okay then. Can I rub your shoulder blades, you look tense.”

“See, I don’t need a back rub or anything else, if you are so bored, pick a magazine or a novel, I packed some for this honeymoon thing. Read or sleep and if its sex that you want let me know. I have enough condoms to last the entire honeymoon.” 

“Oh, Crap.” I said sitting on the bed with a force.

“Jite, why are you being so impossible?”

“It’s not like you were forced to marry me, you could have said you couldn’t do it. Look here, I’m not going to live the rest of my life like this.”

“In fact, how soon can we get a divorce?” I blurted out before I could stop myself.

Not So Happily Married … Episode Two

Couple_ToyinFABBB

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR EPISODE ONE.ENSURE YOU READ IT BEFORE READING THE ONE BELOW (smiles)

Did she just say make me happy? I thought a scowl covering my entire face.

Some people commit evil and expect the people they wrong to act as if it never happened. Even God forgives but he doesn’t forget.

I know people will ask why I am marrying Omoboye if I am yet to forgive what she did. But really I can’t imagine her being with another man. I can’t imagine her carrying the fruit of another man’s seed.

She was mine from the first time I saw her. I knew that even then. She had looked so beautiful and innocent in a red chiffon dress that was so long it swept the floor; she had been standing in front of a row of cookware and looking lovingly at a set of pots. Pretending to want to buy the cookware set was something I had done on impulse but it had worked out eventually.

It’s not like I don’t love Omoboye; I do love her, there is no doubt about that. I love her the way a father loves his daughter, the way a brother loves his sister and the way a man loves a woman. But she had to suffer for what she did to me. She stabbed me in the back. She robbed me of what would have brought me great joy. I was not ready to forgive that.

To think she wanted me to hold her. If she had known how much the sight of her in the tight fitting wedding dress irritated me, she wouldn’t have mentioned anything about me holding her and she would have even removed the dress and walk naked instead. The dress was a constant reminder of her betrayal but she was too insensitive and self absorbed to realize that.

****

We got to our hotel two hours after leaving the reception venue and throughout Jite and I never spoke one word to each other. Our flight to Zanzibar was for the next day and our travel agent had booked a hotel for us close to the airport.

Jite hugged me the moment we came out of the car. He draped an arm around me protectively and kissed me on the cheek as we waited for the agent to walk up to us. I wanted to cringe and move away from Jite’s embrace but I couldn’t deny the comfort it brought so I decided to enjoy it for as long as it would last. The agent greeted us and led us through a private entrance that led to our suite. He handed the keys to Jite, assured us that everything was ready for us and left.

Champagne Gold, the colour and lighting of our room, the bed was huge and my heart sank as soon as I saw it. A huge bed meant Jite could take one side while I took the other. The bed covering was of rich damask and I sat on the bed and held it in my hands reveling in the thick texture and watching Jite as he undressed.

What was the use of this room, the honeymoon and everything if we couldn’t even talk to each other? I thought. He glanced back and saw me watching him. He paused and holding his belt buckle in his hands walked over to the adjoining bathroom to finish undressing.

Sighing I got up and moved to the wardrobe, our luggage had been carefully placed there. I saw the bag I had tagged ‘‘honeymoon stuff” and a sad smile played on my lips. I opened it and selected a night dress. The Coral night dress, the one Bola my maid of honour had excitedly chosen for me saying “babe bobo yen ma se e lese if he sees you in this one, bad ass night dress’’ she had said hitting me on the buttocks in her usual playful manner.

I held the dress out and prayed that Bola would be right.

****

Jite was wearing an Aquamarine blue satin boxers when he came out of the bathroom, I glanced at him cautiously not wanting to be caught staring. My body tinged and flushed at what I saw. He looked so handsome. I felt like throwing my arms around him. I wanted to beg him to look at me and hold me, tell me that everything was alright, that he still loved me and was glad to have me as his wife instead I watched as he picked the TV remote, crawled under the sheets and drew the Eider down up to his throat.

I fixed my eyes on the gold lamp on the dressing table as I undressed. I wanted to look back and see if Jite was watching but was too scared to do so. I decided to assume he was and began to make it a show. I slipped off the wedding dress and was left with the garters and silicone bra that the Victoria Secrets Salesperson had claimed would make any groom go crazy. I prayed in my spirit that it would work. I half hoped he would be so turned on and jump me but nothing happened. I moved to the front of the bed where I was sure he would see me and began to strip slowly. I finished and was completely naked and then I stretched and walked to the bathroom naked. Fail. He didn’t even stir. The show was all for nothing.

The massive Jacuzzi in the suite was white and was so clean it looked like it had never been used. I lay down inside the warm scented water and allowed the waters clogged up in my eyes to flow freely.

“I’m finished”; I whispered aloud,

“I am finished.” I whispered again biting my lips till I tasted blood.

“Jite doesn’t love me again, I’m dead.” I said the words coming out louder that moment. I hugged myself and allowed the tears to flow as freely as the water of the bath.

“Oh God, Jite doesn’t love me anymore, why did I marry him?” “No, I always wanted to do that; I shouldn’t say that.” I chastised myself immediately

“But God, I’m sorry for what I did. I’m sorry for going ahead to marry Jite despite knowing he was yet to forgive me. God I’m sorry, just let Jite forgive me and I won’t ask for any other thing ever again.” The water swirled on and I held my head, the tears mixing with the mucus running down my nose.

Tan Brown, the colour I saw through my puffy eyes, the colour of Jite’s hands, the one he used to draw me out of the bath. My body convulsed in sweet relief when he held me in his arms and rubbed my hair with his right palm. I watched in utter disbelief as he took a towel and dried my body.

“God, is this how fast you work?” I murmured. He kissed my forehead and wrapped the towel around my body.

My veins pulsed, excitement filling my soul. Here was my man cradling me in his arms carrying me towards the bed. Please let this not end I prayed silently. He placed me gingerly on the bed and picked the night dress I laid out. My eyes clouded in disappointment. You are not supposed to be dressing me husband. I thought. You should be making sweet love to me right now.

I started having weekly spa sessions eight months to the wedding. After months of milk baths, Moroccan baths, Thai massages, Swedish massages and countless sauna baths my skin was fresh and as luminous as a freshly budding flower. I expected Jite to be unable to withstand the smoothness and suppleness of my skin. Instead he raised my head and put the dress over my neck. When he was done, he patted my shoulders and ran his hand over my neck. He then made for the other side of the bed. I watched helplessly as he picked the TV remote and drew the bed covers to his chin. Back to square one. I thought my heart sinking.

I was enraged. Why did he give me hope knowing he was going to turn me down, knowing he had no intention of giving me real happiness? What now? I thought. Do I have to go and beg, do I have to crawl, do I have to tear my skin out? My back was turned to him; the room was silent except for the music from the TV. I decided to be brave and so I lay on the bed drawing the Eider down to cover my body.

He removed his wallet from under his pillow the moment he saw me get under the covers. I lay on my side and watched him, his face was straight looking directly at the TV even as he removed the wallet and all the while he was opening it. My heart thumped violently. Go. Move. Try. I willed myself. Touch him. He won’t be able to resist it my mind told me. I was just about to follow the instructions of my heart when he pressed a switch, moved towards me and wrapped his arms around me.

The room was filled with muted Red light immediately Jite switched off the light. It was a room designed for romance, a place for love. My eyes became instantly filled with Red hot passion. Along with the passion came disgust.

What game is he playing? Why he does he give and withdraw affection whenever he wishes?

I cringed as I felt him raise my dress. This isn’t Jite. I thought frowning; the man I knew wouldn’t just raise my dress, he would have taken me to the crescents of passion with his hands, breath and lips and then undress me slowly. He raised my dress,  paused and I heard the tell tale rustling of latex.

“Wait Jite.” I screamed moving frantically towards the light switch. I switched on the light and saw it in his hands.

A condom.

“Jite what is that for?” I asked pointing a perfectly manicured finger at the Condom.

“Do you want this or not?” he asked a nerve twitching in his forehead.

“Yeah, baby I want you but hey hello ooo this is our wedding night, our first night as a couple. What on earth is a condom doing here?”

“ It’s not like we even used it when were still dating so what is it doing here?” I asked again my eyes blazing.

“Oh, you don’t know?” He asked sarcastically giving me a disdainful look.

Strawberry Pink. The colour my face would have displayed if my skin were not so dark. Embarrassment and shame washed over me as I realized why he wanted to use a condom.

“Are things this bad?” I asked in a voice so weak it came out as a whisper.

to be continued

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